To control rats and mice, everyone must make an effort to eliminate sources of rodent food and shelter by following the recommendations:
Carefully follow all the label directions and precautions for rodenticide (rat / mouse poison) bait. If you use rat traps, bait the trap unset for a few days, then set the trigger. Peanut butter, Q-tip ends, or raisins work well as bait. Place traps against the wall, flat on the floor, with the trigger facing the wall.
Clean up vegetable gardens.
Dispose of fallen fruit from trees and shrubs.
Do not leave pet food out overnight, especially outside.
If there is a reported rodent infestation in your neighborhood, do not feed wild birds for 2 to 4 weeks. Only use above ground squirrel-proof bird feeders.
Keep grass cut, especially around sheds and buildings and along fences.
Regularly work yard waste / compost piles.
Seal holes in outside walls around pipes and utility lines with concrete or sheet metal collars. Use 1/4 inch mesh galvanized screening (hardware cloth) on attic and crawl space vents and other louvered openings outside (bathroom and stove hood exhaust).
Store dry pet food and birdseed in covered containers.
Store firewood and lumber at least 12 to 18 inches off the ground.
Use 1-inch of gravel to fill in rodent burrows around sheds, concrete slabs, and porch steps.
Use covered trash containers, not just plastic or paper bags. To eliminate spillage, put garbage out on the morning of the pickup day, not the night before.